It could be one of the most powerful anti-aging, disease-fighting substances available to you, but if Big Pharma has its way, it’ll be yanked off the market and classified as an illegal substance.
With the drug lobbyists yelling in one ear, and the alternative health advocates shouting in the other, I know it can be hard to know who to believe.
Is it an anti-aging fountain of youth—or dangerous hormonal hogwash?
Should it be readily available—or should it be illegal?
Does it protect against heart disease—or cause it?
The answers depend on who you ask, which shouldn’t surprise you. What IS clear is that the drug lobbyists are scared to death and up in arms over this one little substance, and that alone should make your antenna go up.
The disease-blocking hormone that has drug companies running scared
I’m talking about DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone), a natural hormone produced by your body. It’s the most abundant hormone found in your body, so you can imagine how widespread its effects can be.
Its job is to regulate the production and regulation of other steroid hormones and stress hormones (including the biggies like estrogen, testosterone, cortisol, and norepinephrine). It’s also a vital part of increasing lean muscle mass (which, as I’ve told you before, is an especially important part of avoiding broken bones as you age), burning fat, and stimulating bone growth.
Not having enough of this hormone leaves you more vulnerable to just about every major disease you can think of—cancer, diabetes, atherosclerosis, high blood pressure, Parkinson’s disease, nerve deterioration, and plenty of other degenerative diseases that many people consider to be a typical part of getting older.
Study after study has shown that supplementing with DHEA has profound and extensive benefits to your body. In the book Grow Young with HGH, Ronald Klatz says that “DHEA supplements have been shown to help prevent cancer, arterial disease, multiple sclerosis, and Alzheimer’s disease; treat lupus and osteoporosis; enhance the immune system; and enhance memory.”
In another great book, The Super-Hormone Promise, the authors claim that DHEA has the ability to rejuvenate just about every organ system, that it restores energy, improves mood, increases sex drive, and reduces stress and body fat.
That’s quite the resume.
In other words, having enough of this one hormone could do more to help you take control of the aging process than any anti-wrinkle cream or Big Pharma wonder drug could ever hope to do—which is why they’re pulling out all the stops when it comes to keeping this anti-aging “miracle” out of your hands.
Big Pharma goes to bat against DHEA
Two bills have been introduced that would either severely limit—or completely eliminate—your access to DHEA supplements. The first one, S.762, would classify DHEA as an anabolic steroid, which would make it an illegal substance. The second, S.2470, would limit the sale of DHEA to minors.
These bills would make a little more sense if DHEA were an anabolic steroid—but it’s not. That fact alone should have put the kibosh on this legislation. But it’s still hovering out there, its fate in the hands of people who aren’t scientists, and who wouldn’t know a steroid from an android.
It doesn’t help when the drug lobbyists are spreading false information claiming that DHEA can cause heart disease, cancer, stroke, baldness, mood swings, and liver damage. There’s no scientific evidence to support these phony claims. Quite the opposite, in fact.
What are these drug lobbyists so afraid of? Is it that DHEA could be putting your life in danger? Snap out of it! Since when have they EVER placed your best interest over that of their purse strings?
The fact of the matter is, DHEA is SO powerful and SO safe and SO effective that it could potentially eliminate the need for several of Big Pharma’s symptom-control drugs. I’ll tell you, there are fortunes the size of small countries at stake here. That’s why the drug companies want to lock up DHEA in a prison of obscurity so that it will never again see the light of day.
If all the hype surrounding DHEA were just a bunch of baloney, Big Pharma would have nothing to worry about. But it’s not. Study after study shows that this one hormone is stronger and more powerful than we could have ever imagined.
Top 10 reasons to take DHEA
People have written entire books on how and why DHEA is so beneficial. Maybe I’ll write my own book one day, but for now, here’s my CliffsNotes version of the top 10 reasons people take DHEA:
1. To lose weight
DHEA suppresses your appetite. It inhibits the fat-producing enzyme, glucose-6-dehydrogenase, and it stimulates cholecystokinin, a hormone that’s responsible for letting your body know it’s full after eating a meal.
2. To stimulate your immune system
DHEA stimulates the cells that attack tumors (monocytes), the cells that fight disease-causing organisms (B-cells), and infection-fighting cells (T-cells).
3. To protect against cancer
Studies of lab animals have shown that DHEA can protect against breast, liver, lung, colon, skin, prostate, testicular, and ovarian cancers. It works by stimulating your body’s natural killer cells—your mainline of defense against cancer.
4. To improve brain function
DHEA is especially important for healthy brain function because your brain tissue contains six and a half times more of the hormone than another other tissue in your body. DHEA can improve memory and cognitive processing, and can control levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
5. To enhance sex drive
DHEA is important for the male sex drive because it’s responsible for producing 30 to 50 percent of the male sex hormones. But it’s even more important for women: Before menopause, 70 percent of the female sex hormones are derived from DHEA. After menopause, nearly 100 percent of estrogens come from DHEA.
6. To protect against diabetes
Studies show that people who take DHEA experience enhanced insulin sensitivity. One study showed that 50 mg per day of DHEA reduced abdominal fat and improved insulin action.
7. To prevent osteoporosis
DHEA seems to be able to prevent or reverse bone loss in women (but not in men). It’s the initial part of a chain reaction that begins with the conversion of DHEA into estrone, which in turn increases the activity of bone-building osteoblasts.
8. To improve mood
People who supplement with DHEA report having an improved sense of well being, better sleep, more energy, and improved stress management.
9. To calm the symptoms of menopause
Research has shown that supplemental DHEA increases androgen and estrogen plasma levels in menopausal women. It has the potential to offer all of the benefits of estrogen replacement therapy—with none of the side effects.
10. To prevent heart disease
Having high levels of DHEA can protect against coronary atherosclerosis and has been shown to reduce the risk of death from cardiovascular disease.
This is quite a list, and I don’t think that DHEA is the answer to all of these problems all of the time. But it is an important aspect of general good health.
The FDA should know better: Hormones aren’t health foods
As with all the other hormones, your body produces less and less DHEA as you age. Bringing your levels back up to what they were when you were 30 will make you look and feel more like you did back then...and who wouldn’t want to shave a few (or 20) years off their age?
Of course, even with all of these incredible benefits, I’d never tell my patients to run out and load up on DHEA just because of this research. It’s still a hormone, and it still needs to be closely monitored by your doctor or health care professional.
The problem is, people haven’t always taken DHEA intelligently. Twenty years or so ago, DHEA supplements began popping up all over the place—and people started popping these hormones like Flintstones chewables.
Even though it was approved by the FDA as a health food product, DHEA really wasn’t a health food but a hormone. And hormone therapy needs to be very closely monitored by someone (usually a doctor) who can test your levels and tell you just how much you need—if any at all. But people began taking it on their own and reports of bad experiences led to full-scale studies that did their best to decry DHEA’s benefits.
DHEA is a strong anti-aging agent, along with HGH and testosterone. It is safe—when it’s used properly.
I have recommended DHEA for years—but not for everyone. You shouldn’t take hormones you don’t need—even if you don’t have to have a prescription in order to get them. As with all the hormones, you’re probably deficient in them if you are over the age of 50. This is a good place to start on hormone replacement therapy. For example, it would be better to naturally increase your testosterone level by DHEA administration than with injections.
Here’s what to do:
Forget the propaganda against it—you should take DHEA seriously. Here’s a four-step plan that will help you tap into its benefits—and make sure it’s always available to you.
(1) Get your DHEA level checked. Even though it’s widely available, I don’t recommend taking any hormone—even a safe one like DHEA—without having your level tested to make sure you actually need it. Have your doctor test your level. If it is below that of a normal 30-year-old, you should begin taking DHEA.
(2) Get the right dose. I take 200 milligrams of DHEA every day. But you probably will only need to take between 50 and 100 milligrams. Again, you should consult a doctor who understands DHEA and can help you determine how much is right for you. If your current physician doesn’t “do” DHEA, contact the American College for Advancement in Medicine at (800)532-3688 or online at www.acam.org. They can give you a list of alternative doctors in your area.
(3) Beware of the herbal products sold in health food stores as “DHEA precursors.” It’s bunkum. Be sure you’re getting the real thing.
(4) Let Congress know that you want them to oppose S.762 and S.2470. Go to my website, www.DouglassReport.com and click on “Act Now” to find out how you can play a part in keeping this all-important hormone completely legal—and available for all who need it.